Millennium Post

Kaneria applies for Visa to appear in spot-fixing hearing

Pakistan leg-spinner, Danish Kaneria who is under investigation in a spot-fixing scandal, has applied for a British visa to appear at a hearing of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) disciplinary committee on 21 May.

Kaneria through his lawyers has also filed his preliminary reply to the charge sheet issued against him by the ECB in the spot-fixing inquiry.

'We have sent our preliminary reply through our lawyers in London and Danish has pleaded not guilty,' brother Vicky told.

'Our lawyers have also pointed out that there was no evidence except another person's statement in the case and it was unjust to charge Danish because of this,'Vicky said.

He, however, made it clear that his brother would be appearing for the hearing starting from May 21st to defend himself and get his name cleared in the spot-fixing scandal.

The ECB disciplinary committee charged Kaneria and his former Essex teammate, Mervyn Westfield in the spot fixing case that started after a Pro-40 county match between Essex and Durham in 2009.

England county player, Westfield was jailed for four months in February by a English court after admitting he had accepted money for deliberately bowling wides in the said match.

The ECB announced it would be holding its own inquiry into the scandal after Westfield's lawyers also named Kaneria in court as a go-between in the spot-fixing case during the trial.

Vicky said Danish was keen to get his name cleared once and for all in the whole issue so that he could focus on reviving his international career.

'We have applied for visas and if we get them on time we will be going to London for the hearing,' he added.

Kaneria, only the second Hindu to play Test cricket for Pakistan, has been sidelined from international cricket since September, 2010.

The PCB sidelined him after he was named in the spot fixing inquiry conducted initially by the Essex police which questioned the Pakistani spinner but later cleared him for lack of evidence.

'There is every likelihood that the recording of the questioning done by the Essex police will form part of the hearing by the ECB,' a PCB official said.

The PCB has so far distanced itself from the case and one official claimed this was because under the ICC anti-corruption code, a player charged in his individual capacity had to defend himself and his home board could not get involved or support him in any way.

Kaneria also took the PCB to the Sindh high court for not clearing him for selection even though he had been cleared by Essex police during the investigation into the spot-fixing scandal.

But the court dismissed his petition on technical grounds.

The PCB has allowed the leg-spinner to continue playing domestic cricket.
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